Lazy Mary's Lemon Tart

By • October 29, 2009 • 183 Comments

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Author Notes: Versions of this simple quick dessert have circulated around the valley for years. It's a great dessert to make at the last minute. I have quite a few lemon trees , mostly Eureka (big thick skinned), but only a few sweet Meyer lemons which make the best tart. But, it only takes one large lemon! Unfortunately for me, lemons don't pair very well with red wine. - dymnynodymnyno

Food52 Review: People who taste this smooth, fragrant tart won't believe that it contains a whole lemon, rind and all! Nor will they understand how you got it to be so fragrant and light and not at all gummy like lemon curd tarts can sometimes be. In our view "Mary" wasn't lazy at all, she was brilliant. She has you whiz the filling together in a blender, then simply pour it into a blind-baked tart shell. Dymnyno gave the tart her own touch -- a Meyer lemon -- which lends it fragrance and finesse and none of the intrusive acidity found in regular lemons. One catch: you'll need to use your own tart dough. If you don't have a favorite, we recommend the Joy of Cooking's sweet pastry dough. We lined a 9-inch fluted tart pan with it, pricked it with a fork, filled it with pie weights and blind-baked it at 375 F for 15 minutes then removed the weights and baked it for another 10 minutes. Once the tart shell cooled we added the lemon filling and sent it back for one last turn in the oven. Start checking it at 35 minutes. - A&MThe Editors

Serves 1 tart

  • 1 large Meyer lemon, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • Your favorite tart shell
  1. Heat oven to 350° F.
  2. Put all ingredients (except tart shell) into a blender and whirl like crazy!
  3. Pour into tart shell.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes or until set, watching so that the top doesn’t burn.
  • This recipe is a Wildcard Contest Winner!
Jump to Comments (183)

Tags: Desserts, lemon, sweet, tart

Comments (183) Questions (14)

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3 months ago Marian

Has anyone tried this recipe with limes? I couldn't find Meyer lemons and it seemed that limes have thinner skins than the available lemons, so I thought they might be a better substitute.

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3 months ago Alison

I love this recipe and got really really great comments from all my family when I made it!! So easy and tasty! Thanks!

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4 months ago huy dang

Never bake a pie before and my daughter loves lemon bar, so make one last week. It was so easy and fool proof and turned out so good. We're lucky to have relatives with Meyers lemon tree and just asked them to pluck a few and we'd have a wonderful desert.

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4 months ago DVE

Hi -
9" tart pan should be fine and baking it before will prevent a soggy crust.
It's a good recipe.

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4 months ago loique

so going to make this today.... but... have a question. what size tart shell? do you pre-bake the shell? thanks...

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4 months ago kcallison

I did pre-baked my pie shell for about 5-7 minutes.

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4 months ago JANET

Made this with a biscuit crumb shell blind baked for 10 mins, before filling.. Would have been terrific , only I used thick skin lemons, Big Big mistake, very tart, will try to find thin skinned normal lemons as unable to obtain Meyer lemons. Wish I had read the comments before making.

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5 months ago MicronCat

Since I am too lazy to make a crust, I used the fillinf part of this recipe, and the cracker crust from Bill Smith's Atlantic Beach Pie (also on F52). It's not cold yet, but I had to cut it due to circumstances beyond my control, so of course, I had to taste test. Yum!

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5 months ago LysiaLoves

Has anyone tried this with an alternative to white sugar? Usually I bake with coconut palm sugar but wondering if the flavor might be too dark... I do have blonde coconut sugar which worked great in my gluten-free lemon ginger blueberry muffins but not sure how it'd be in this. Honey is too strong tasting and agave is more neutral but I'd think it'd throw the liquid ratio way off. Hmmm...

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10 months ago Manhattan Tart

This is about a bazillion times easier than lemon bars and couldn't be any tastier -- or prettier! Made this for lemon lovers and it didn't disappoint. Will happily make it time & again. If Meyers aren't available I'll use a regular thin-skinned lemon since we like things a bit puckery!

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11 months ago barry strydom

Makes this regular as clockwork for the coffeeshop. U love it. Few of the regulars felt it was "too sweet". So, for us I reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup. And now everyone is happy....

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11 months ago Cinnamin

I love the simplicity and ease of this tart! It's sort of like Donna Hay's baked lemon pudding, where she blitzes the whole lemon with sugar and egg yolks. I'm yet to venture into tart-making territory, and this would be a good tart to start with.

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11 months ago betty carson

Made this yesterday - my first experience with Meyer lemons. It was very good, but I was disappointed . . . not tart enough, too sweet. Suppose that depends on the lemon! Texture was good. Next time I will use a regular lemon, sans seeds, and see what happens. Might reduce sugar to 1-1/4 or 1-1/2 cups.

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11 months ago dymnyno

Yes, Meyer lemons are milder and sweeter than "regular" lemons. Be sure find a lemon that does not have a super thick skin.

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11 months ago Terry

Can regular granulated sugar be used instead of superfine??

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11 months ago Caroline Conger

Delicious! I put it in a cashew and almond based tart crust. This is my new go to dessert recipe because it could not be easier or more amazing!

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about 1 year ago DVE

When doing this I like to use an organic lemon if you can get one, or a well scrubbed regular one. I remove the seeds because they are bitter and my consistency usually has tiny bits of lemon that make for an interesting texture, I think. However, if you blend it longer I presume it would get to creamy.

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about 1 year ago Whitney Bowles

You really just throw the rind and all into the blender? What consistency should the mix be when it's done blending?

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about 1 year ago dymnyno

Yep, just throw it all in seeds, rind and all. It will be very creamy and smooth.

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about 1 year ago Whitney Bowles

Thanks! Gonna make this on Thanksgiving. :-)

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3 months ago Antoinette Arabella Palmieri

About how long do you blend it?

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over 1 year ago kath1

It is nice sugarless with maple syrup poured on. I don't think lack of sugar has harmed the structure of the filling. so add sweetened cream (even better creme fraiche) to serve and less sugar in the pie would be a lovely variation.

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over 1 year ago DVE

To Kath who forgot the sugar - ouch!
To Leslie, I've never tried freezing it but I don't think I would. It might get watery when it defrosted. Maybe just the crust in the pan, then crisp it up again in the oven for a few minutes?

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over 1 year ago leslie

can this be frozen in advance

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over 1 year ago kath1

I forgot to put the sugar in! It's a bit like a lemon quiche.